Moral Dilemma: What Coors Light Branded Merchandise Would You Enter to Win?

I was walking into the beer store last night, when a shiny new “ENTER TO WIN” Grill Master four-burner grill caught my eye.  They only problem?  It was branded with a big Coors Light logo. 😦

I have to tell you, I was temped to fill out a slip of paper and drop my personal information into the grinding gears of the Coors Light marketing machine.  I decided to mull it over while I shopped for beer and a couple of nice whiskeys for my father in law.

By the time I exited the store, I had decided that I wasn’t going to lower myself to groveling at the feet of the macro-brewers for a snowball’s chance to win a dee-luxe grill.  I already have a nice three burner one at home that’s in good shape, so I’m not sure I’d even have a place for this thing.

But it got me to thinking – what Coors Light branded freebies would get me to give up my email address and cell phone number, assuming that I couldn’t remove the branding without destroying the item if I won it?

First up, glassware and clothing are out. I have enough shaker pints at home, and I’m not walking around advertising Coors Light on my back.

I probably would have entered to win the grill if I really needed one, but I’d feel like a tool every time I saw that logo (again, assuming it can’t be removed for the purposes of this moral exercise).  But it’d be in my backyard, so who’d see it?

I’d be temped by a nice “Rocky” mountain bike, but I don’t think I could ride around in public with the Coors Light logo between my legs. I think the same goes for a car, plus it’d be a cop-magnet – “look ossifer, I looove bheer!”

All told, I think Coors Light and the rest of them can keep their crap, even the unbranded stuff they give away in sweepstakes, like shopping sprees and NFL tickets.  My chances of winning are beyond miniscule, but there’s a 100% chance that their marketing ploy will be successful if I submit my info to them.  It’s a lose-lose proposition if you ask me.

What about you?  What goodies would you give your personal information to Coors Light for?  As always, let us know below!




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Craft beer nerd, frequent beer blogger and occasional home brewer.

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50 Comments on “Moral Dilemma: What Coors Light Branded Merchandise Would You Enter to Win?”

  1. June 29, 2012 at 11:18 am #

    Take the high ground! Having worked for a Miller-Coors house, I just couldn’t do it. The underlying problem is the fact that they undercut the market constantly. They will sell macros at a LOSS to make sure they have shelf and handle space. The more taps, the more items, the SKUs, the more packaging the better. Damn choice, they want to shove every other beer to the deepest darkest corner of the store.

    By entering for that garbage you are ultimately supporting foreign corporations that dominate our market. My favorite fact: Craft Brewers generally provide up to 7-9% of the market share by volume, but over 50% of the jobs in the brewing industry. Seems awfully imbalanced. I would rather build a grill from an oil drum, some old fence, a couple screws, hinges and stick to hold it open that have that garbage logo on my grill.

    • June 29, 2012 at 11:23 am #

      Just like I said, but with FACTS! Nice!!

    • June 29, 2012 at 11:26 am #

      “My favorite fact: Craft Brewers generally provide up to 7-9% of the market share by volume, but over 50% of the jobs in the brewing industry. ”

      Where did that stat come from? I don’t know how that would even be possible.

      • June 29, 2012 at 11:28 am #

        Obviously it comes from craft brewers!

        • June 29, 2012 at 11:33 am #

          Of course it does! That would be awesome if it’s true but like to see the source before I start passing it on.

        • June 29, 2012 at 2:16 pm #


          Brewers Association facts regarding the volume of craft beer

          Craft Brewing Facts
          Craft brewers currently provide an estimated 103,585 jobs in the U.S., including serving staff in brewpubs.

          Growth of the craft brewing industry in 2011 was 13% by volume and 15% by dollars compared to growth in 2010 of 12% by volume and 15% by dollars.
          Craft brewers sold an estimated 11,468,152 barrels* of beer in 2011, up from 10,133,571 in 2010.

          The craft brewing sales share in 2011 was 5.7% by volume and 9.1% by dollars.

          Remember that the big guys are also members of the brewers association, but not segmented into the craft division.

          Some more interesting stats from BA

          I have put in an email to see if there is any information available regarding total non-wholesale brewery employment numbers.

        • June 29, 2012 at 2:48 pm #

          Thanks for this Kenny, and don’t kill yourself. I can reach out to the BA myself and ask for data as well. You’re a peach!

      • June 29, 2012 at 11:31 am #

        Pretty common fact. I will do some research and find the original source. Craft beer, by volume, is 7-9% of the industry. Generally accepted. In fact I am pretty sure that that is a NBWA yearly report.

        I will try and find the 50% of jobs stat. It makes sense though. Giant brewers have HIGHLY automated processes. Small brewers have tap room employees, their own delivery personnel, their own marketing groups. I think within that Segment you have to include New Belgium, Sierra, Boston Beer Group, etc, because they are still defined as craft, is not necessarily micro.

        I am talking pure brewing jobs, not wholesale. All the Bud trucks you see, well not all, but the majority, are wholesaler NOT brewery. So, it can give a sense of distortion to what I am saying. I am saying brewery. Which makes it an easier stat to swallow, but still GROSSLY imbalanced. Let me find it.

        • June 29, 2012 at 11:32 am #

          Please post it here when you do – I need a Labor Day craft beer post idea for!

        • June 29, 2012 at 11:42 am #

          Will do. Just sent out a couple emails to people who would probably be able to point to the source. I will follow up.

  2. June 29, 2012 at 11:19 am #

    Jim, i’m with you…i think i have a couple coor’s glasses in the cupboard…but, i bought them at a thrift shop…i think that the only non-craft beer that i’d consider pimping would be PBR…maybe…

    • June 29, 2012 at 11:27 am #

      I have a couple of old Bass pints in the house that I find myself holding from time to time, but that’s as low as I go.

      Anything with a history like PBR or Olympia or Schlitz or whatever is cool.

  3. June 29, 2012 at 11:23 am #

    Awwwww, come on… this is where it’s crossing the line from beer geek to beer snob and maybe even beyond.

    I received a Miller Lite neon sign as a gift and didn’t hesitate for a second about hanging it in my bar.

    It’s a good thing I already ordered my Spiegelau glasses or I might have changed my mind after reading your snobby post Jim 😉

    • June 29, 2012 at 11:27 am #

      Will you be enjoying any Miller Lite in your fancy glasses, Mikey?

      • June 29, 2012 at 11:29 am #

        Not likely. And I wouldn’t let my friends use them for Miller Lite either.

        But if they want to drink Miller Lite, that’s fine with me too although I will politely suggest better alternatives to them that they could drink out of my better glassware 🙂

        • June 29, 2012 at 11:48 am #

          I’m just pointing out that if you bought the fancy glasses, you might be a *little* snobby as well. 🙂

        • June 29, 2012 at 12:09 pm #

          Geeky Jim, not snobby. I strive to keep on the right side of that line.

          I bought them because I believe you when you said they would enhance my beer drinking experience.

        • Don
          June 29, 2012 at 12:32 pm #

          Never believe Jim. Words to live by.

        • June 29, 2012 at 1:18 pm #

          I’m in the exact same boat, Mikey. Try to turn them on to the good stuff, but otherwise stay out of the way. The last thing I want to do is piss somebody off by insulting their taste in beer.

          I’d also hang the sign if it was given to me by a friend – it’d be insulting not to.

          My point was that it’s a snob move to not let people use your fancy glasses for a beer you deem as not being worthy. I’m not calling you a snob exactly, just saying that there are standards we establish when we get geeky about beer, and the line between “snob” and “geek” is usually drawn by the guy who’s pointing the finger at you.

    • Terry L.
      June 29, 2012 at 11:51 am #

      Seriously. I agree with Mikey. Despite the “facts” that Kenny presented above, the macro breweries do provide a lot of jobs to hard-working American’s. This hatred and smack talk of the big brewers is just snobbery. You guys do it all the time. It’s what puts a dark shadow on hard-core craft beer fans like myself (who shell out $85 for a six-pack of Westvleteren). Tim Fish wrote a good article the other day about what makes a wine snob. Maybe you should read it. I love craft beer. I’m friends with a lot of craft brewers. I rarely drink anything but craft. But why talk shit about MillerCoors? You don’t have to drink their products? What do you get out of insulting the millions upon millions of American’s that do drink their products and like their products? It’s bad taste, man. And, seriously, if you hated them so much, why wouldn’t you want their free shit? Make them spend money on a consumer they’ll never get.

      • June 29, 2012 at 1:15 pm #

        Careful up there on that high horse, Terry – quite a few folks have fallen off them hard around here (myself included).

        Sorry that my well-reasoned dislike for the macro brewers (who do everything within their power to undermine the livelihoods of your craft brewing buddies) is “casting a shadow” over your totally righteous “hard-core” craft beer fandom.

        You can label me a snob if you want, except for the fact that I don’t care what people drink. I’m not insulting people who drink Coors Light, because I think it’s their prerogative. That’s the main issue I take with your comment – I’m not dissing millions upon millions of Americans who drink macro beer – you’ll see me writing “drink what you like” again and again in my posts.

        I’m simply stating that I personally don’t want to be associated with Coors Light because I think their product is crap and they actively work to keep craft beers off the shelf and out of the taps. This post was asking other beer geeks how they feel about rocking macro-brewer-branded swag.

        It’s a good question, an interesting question. And it looks like most everyone here understood what I was getting at by asking it except you.

        • Terry L.
          June 29, 2012 at 1:59 pm #

          I don’t think I’m the one on the high horse, Jim. I understand the point of your article. It’s just the underlying tone of it all. When you say, “but I’d feel like a tool every time I saw that logo,” you are making implications about the people that drink, work for, and support big brewers… Whether you think so or not. I get that macro brewers do everything in their power to keep and grow shelf space and increase revenues at any expense. It’s business. But I’d say craft brewers are doing a pretty damn good job at bringing choice to the market and growing the craft segment despite what they’re up against. The big brewers are hurting themselves, why do we as beer geeks need to rub it in their face and celebrate the fact that “we” think their product’s crap? Why can’t we just celebrate the fact that craft brewers are producing some of the most amazing beer that’s ever been produced and that the craft segment is growing at double digit year over year numbers despite all the money, promotional swag, iphone apps and scantily clad promotional models the macro breweries throw at the market?

        • June 29, 2012 at 2:39 pm #

          I’d feel like a tool because I allowed my personal greed for a shiny object to overpower my moral compass, not because people who drink Coors Light are tools. Every time I saw that grill, I’d think I’m weak sauce.

          I have friends who love Bud, which is great – again, drink what you like. Enjoy your Bud, but if you come to my house, there’ll be Victory Lager instead. Unless I know you ONLY drink Bud, then I’ll buy you Bud. It’s only beer.

          And to answer you question “why do we as beer geeks need to rub it in their face and celebrate the fact that ‘we’ think their product’s crap?” – I’m not rubbing it in anyone’s face, I’m just stating my feelings about endorsing their product by participating in their marketing. And Jesus, now poor Coors is a victim of my snobbery? Will my onslaught against hard working Americans and foreign-owned bullies never end? I’m clearly out to ruin this great nation of ours.

          You’re giving me that weird feeling I get when someone with ties to big beer wades in here and tries to act like a regular guy asking why we’re talking so mean and being such snobs. Google tells me I’m on to something…

      • June 29, 2012 at 2:09 pm #

        They do provide jobs. You are right. But you have never had to sit on a room with the bastards and listen to them force their horse crap down other people’s throats.

        What choice do people have who work for local distributors when Miller-Coors comes into town and if they catch you drinking anything other than Miller or Coors, you could get fired. If you are blasting the other brands that may reside in your own portfolio, you stand to lose a 7 million dollar check from Miller at the end of the year. It’s crooked as all hell.

        Then you get entities like Tenth and Blake who go out and gobble up companies like Terrapin, yes its just a strategic investment, in an effort to increase the legitimacy of the Coors portfolio.

        I see your point. However, it really isn’t snobbery. The big guys use big money to put fiscal and political pressure on every day men and women who just want to make great beer. See Wisconsin as your best example. That was all Miller-Coors money. I think, if anything, this recession has taught us you can’t trust the big companies. Not one bit. Big beer is no different.

        • June 29, 2012 at 2:49 pm #

          C’mon, Kenny – they’re the VICTIM here. Have some compassion!!!! 🙂

      • Brett
        June 29, 2012 at 2:42 pm #

        I totally agree w/ you Terry, but I think Jim was just trying to stir the pot a little…….if his opinion on everything was “don’t care”, I don’t think this would be a very interesting website.

        • June 29, 2012 at 2:47 pm #

          Thanks for getting it, Brett. I posed the question and shared my personal thoughts so we could explore how beer geeks feel about interacting with a macro brewer for the chances to win fabulous prizes. It’s an interesting question I thought, and one that I can’t answer for anyone but myself. At any rate, I definitely stirred up SOMETHING!

  4. June 29, 2012 at 11:40 am #

    Last Thanksgiving, I was at a Buffalo Wild Wings with my brother-in-law watching a football game. They were having a drawing for a Miller Lite-branded turkey fryer. I entered because I couldn’t wait to use it to brew beer that doesn’t taste like sour pee. But, alas, I didn’t win it.

    • June 29, 2012 at 11:49 am #

      That would be an awesome irony – using a Miler Lite setup to brew good beer. IT’s like the time Han and Chewie stole that Imperial Shuttle…

      …yes, I’m a nerd.

      • June 29, 2012 at 12:44 pm #

        You’d have to “brew casually” in order to avoid suspicion.

        • June 29, 2012 at 1:18 pm #


  5. June 29, 2012 at 11:58 am #

    I wouldn’t enter because we grill with charcoal not gas 😉

    Sometimes you just can’t get away from the macro branding, as is the case with my Broncos and Avalanche pint glasses that have Coors Light and Miller Light on the reverse sides; at least one side of each has something cool on it.

    That said, we were in a few antique stores on a trip recently and saw a couple of vintage Coors lighted bar signs that tempted me. If I could find the one with the animated waterfall, I’d jump on it in an instant, it reminds me of the dive bars I frequented when I was much younger.

    • June 29, 2012 at 12:57 pm #

      I think nostalgia and co-marketing deals with the devil are both okay. Nothing like old-timey dive bar stuff!

  6. June 29, 2012 at 12:07 pm #

    You should have entered anyway. “Enter to win” means you’re going to win, all you have to do is enter. As a fellow copywriter, I always have to change headlines to “Enter for a chance to win” for legal reasons.

    So go back to the store, drop in an entry, sue when you don’t win, and buy as much unbranded beer merchandise as your settlement check will get you!

    • June 29, 2012 at 1:20 pm #

      Ha ha – I like your thinking Andy! I used to do a lot of promotional writing, and we’d always have to be very precise about how we framed “for your chance” to do ANYTHING. Because people are out there, waiting to pounce! I guess I’m out of practice, as I didn’t even think about it in this case. Good eye!

  7. Mathew
    June 29, 2012 at 12:32 pm #

    I would enter to win a Coors Light Girl Friend.

    • Don
      June 29, 2012 at 12:35 pm #

      Good point Mathew.

    • June 29, 2012 at 12:43 pm #

      You want a girl who’s cheap and has no taste?

      • Don
        June 29, 2012 at 12:51 pm #

        If they look like the commercials…YES!

        • June 29, 2012 at 1:21 pm #

          Two words:

          Aaaand Twiiiins!!!

  8. Don
    June 29, 2012 at 12:57 pm #

    I have no moral compass, and would have entered the competition, leaving the e-mail space blank, or giving them my wife’s e-mail. Don’t want my inbox clogged up with all their bullshit.

    • June 29, 2012 at 1:23 pm #

      Wife: Honey, why do I keep getting images of bikini girls and frosty trains sent to my inbox?
      Don: Did it say anything about winning a grill?
      Wife: What? No… I don’t see anything about that.
      Don: Then I have no idea what you’re talking about…

      • Don
        June 29, 2012 at 2:10 pm #

        Exactly! 🙂

  9. Diss Content
    June 29, 2012 at 1:05 pm #

    First one needs to define free.

    Assume you are the winner. Is there a shipping charge or do you take the one on display? Will they use your likeness and name as one of the grateful winners and gleeful consumers of Coors Light? Doesn’t matter anyway.

    These contests typically post the MSRP as a way to add to thrill of winning such a contest. Let’s say it is $699 in the fine print. Live in California? Then get ready to throw down $50.68 for sales tax. Still a bargain and summer has just begun…. Wooo hoooo!

    Year end finds the grill is covered for winter with Christmas and New Years stories about how you lucked out and won that awesome gas grill…… Woooo hoooo, some more!

    The 1099 cometh! What on Earth is that? Yep, winning stuff is viewed just like income and coincidentally taxed just like it too. Making a good middle class income? Then get ready to add 25% for the Feds or $174.75, and if your state has an income tax like California, then pay another $55.92 if you please for a grand total (with sales tax) of $281.35 for your free gas grill. More of a Pyrrhic victory in this case.

    I’ll keep the old Weber and drop $281 on some good stuff that only haunts me the next day and helps me forget taxes not pay more.

    • June 29, 2012 at 1:25 pm #

      I like it when someone does the math! You’re right about the tax burden. I once ran a contest that gave away three Dodge Vipers. One of the winner almost threw up because all she could think about was what she’d owe in taxes. I’m sure she put it in the classifieds the moment we pulled away.

      • June 29, 2012 at 10:57 pm #

        Did she nearly throw up because it was a Dodge Viper (definitely an acquired taste) or the tax burden?

        I got a cool little tasting glass with the Firestone Brewing logo on it for attending an event. It wouldn’t be quite as cool if it said Coors. As a rule, I don’t enter sweepstakes or giveaways because it means giving away personal information. But, giving you guys my email address? No problem!

    • June 29, 2012 at 2:33 pm #

      I like the way you think. As Americans we tend to go for the quick payoff, w/o regard to consequences, intended or not. Strategic planning usually equates to (two weeks or less) in advance–tops!

      Yes, by all means, look that gift horse in the mouth, or to paraphrase: Beware of Geeks bearing gifts.

      • June 29, 2012 at 2:44 pm #

        As a geek myself, I use that phrase all the time!

        And as generation who grew up with the threat of nuclear war looming over our heads, we do tend to party like it’s 1999 even though we know it’s not.

  10. Bill
    July 1, 2012 at 7:08 pm #

    I guess I’m not snob enough.

  11. Kid Carboy Jr.
    July 4, 2012 at 1:38 pm #

    I would just enter, and if I won I would deface the Coors portion somehow.

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